This is the journal of my endeavours to grow a range of fruit, veg and flowers from seed, grow organically, and my attempts to create a personal paradise with 1/2 acre of maintained gardens and 1/2 acre wild meadows. Northern Ireland's average daily high temperatures are 18 °C (64 °F) in July and 6 °C (43 °F) in January. Soil type: Clay

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Community Gardening Update

Even though summer feels like it's coming to an end, there's still lots of harvesting (and deadheading to be done) with flowers, herbs, fruits and veggies still available and many plants thriving.

The community garden at Antrim Castle Gardens has looked well this year. We're a small group of volunteers who give a few hours each week to keep areas of the gardens 'under our care' looking good and productive.

This year our greenhouse contained several varieties of tomato, cucumber, and a grapevine - with our very first bunch of grapes! One of our volunteers made a sign, writing with chalk on a piece of slate, to help encourage donations from passer-bys in exchange for a plant. This has worked well as a way to raise some money for projects.
One of our members had an idea of a 'cut flower' bed so we developed this area earlier in the year, growing plants from seed. It has turned out to be an eye-catching area, which contains plants like sweet pea, cosmos, snapdragon, asters, and dahlia. 

Last year we noticed one of our flower beds was in a shadier section of the garden so this year we developed a 'Woodland' flower bed. Many of the plants were donated to our group from some of the plant nurseries that attended the Garden Show Ireland (Northern Ireland's largest gardening event). 

Above and below: The flower beds bring lots of colour throughout Spring, Summer and Autumn with their mix of perennials, herbaceous plants, bulbs and some annuals.

Above and below: This year we have also been fortunate to have obtained a polytunnel. This will allow us to grow more plants from seed, and soon it will be filled to the brim!

Our group never seems to rest and our current project is developing a Cottage-style planting scheme that will run across an area approx 30 feet by 10 feet. This well keep us busy over Autumn and into the New Year.

For more info on the volunteer gardening group, click here

Copyright: All words and photos are property of Kelli's Northern Ireland Garden.


  1. I've always wanted a cutting garden! Hubby is redoing our veggie garden beds this fall, and it will give us more room. Dare I keep an area for cutting flowers?

    1. I think you should! It would be fun to try it and cut flowers are so nice to have, and are quite expensive in the shops.

  2. It looks lovely, Kelli. I particularly like the slate signs. The old kitchen sink would look good with some succulents planted in it.

  3. There's so many projects in the community garden, lots to keep everyone interested.

  4. Lovely flower beds and cutting garden, flowers are so much fun. You made some beautiful signs for the different parts of the garden!

  5. It all looks good, I'm debating getting rid of some of the soft fruit bushes for a small cutting garden x